Chapter 20: Collaboration

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With many types of beverages entering the market, many commercials began to appear one after another, displaying their medicinal benefits, the use of first rate tea leaves with freshly squeezed fruit juice, or even using flavours from overseas. Their slogans would usually have ‘Foreign aristocrat’s favourite drink’, or ‘XX nobility only beverages’ etc.

The company where Su Le works at was called BaiSheng Beverages Ltd and all its products were traditional tea based drinks. Also, the company slogan was ‘Local-Have a taste of the people’s livelihood, have a taste of BaiSheng.’

From Su Le’s point of view, using that slogan for advertisement would be more impactful compared to ‘XX nobility favourite beverages’ because many people cared not about nobility and was likely to know the lifestyle of a duke, or earl anyway. To them, what’s more important would be the taste, the price, and whether it would suit them. And that’s why there would definitely be more people drinking green tea than coffee beverages.

BaiSheng’s positioning was pretty good so their market share in the beverage market was stable. Even though they could not be compared to the larger companies, they were not unreputable either.

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Working in BaiSheng Ltd, Su Le had been trying to understand its marketing style and the production process. She would even occasionally run into her short and stout boss. Her days can be considered as pretty good.

“Su Le, can you check the data from this report and then rewrite to another document? Please print a copy of the document and hand it in to the executive manager,” A colleague handed a file to Su Le and she flipped through it. Then she took out a pen from the stationery holder and marked the document, “Isn’t the executive manager on a business trip?”

“I heard that the contract has already been signed,” the colleague shrugged, “Who knows what happened.”

The executive manager whom they were talking about was the woman who interviewed Su Le. Su Le smacked her lips. That woman was indeed capable. Previously, the vice chief executive went to get the contract, but were unsuccessful even after a month of discussion, but that woman was able to get the contract within two weeks! She is the role model of us women, the best of the best.

After a careful inspection, Su Le discovered that the data was incorrect. She frowned. This report was going to be used in the evaluation of the market, how could such an error occur? After re-typing the file, Su Le stood up and went to the executive manager’s office and lightly knocked on the door twice.

“Come in.”

When Su Le entered, she saw Jiang Ting who didn’t seem to be doing anything important and she passed the file to Jiang Ting, “Executive Jiang, this is the branch’s market report.”

“Ah, Su Le?” Jiang Ting massaged her forehead. It appears she was in low spirits. She took the report and scanned through it, “You have been working here for a month alright, have you gotten used to it?”

“Yes,” Su Le saw that Jiang Ting wasn’t in good spirits so she asked, “Executive Jiang, would you like someone to bring you a cup of coffee?”

“No need,” Jiang Ting said as she took a file out from the drawers, “The company is planning to collaborate with JinChu corporation. What are your thoughts?”

“JinChu?” Su Le was surprised, “Isn’t JinChu a technology and commercial planning company, why are we collaborating with them?” Also, isn’t Wei Chu the boss of that company?

“We’re just reaping benefits from each other,” Jiang Ting laughed, “JinChu will be creating a plan of the market and an advertisement for us free of charge and in return their logo will be on our products.”

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Su Le still felt that something was not right. With the current strength of JinChu, there was no need to use this method to advertise themself, especially when their main focus are on technological products. Also, they have a very wide connection so even if they do want to use such a method to advertise, why would they choose BaiSheng, a beverages company, as their collaboration partner. This move from JinChu was very confusing indeed.

“The details still hasn’t been set yet and the boss has already given this to me to handle.” Jiang Ting saw that Su Le was speculating so she smiled, “The boss and CEO Wei’s father know each other so this matter is probably because of their relationship.”

Su Le understood. No wonder Wei Chu was doing something that would not bring him much benefits. So it was because of friendship. As expected, Wei Chu, who successfully ran his business to this stage, was not someone who would make odd decisions that wouldn’t benefit his company.

“I originally planned to go to JinChu at 11am today to discuss the details of the collaboration, but I have an important client to meet later so I can’t leave. Later, you go in my stead,” Jiang Ting pushed the file to Su Le, “If there is anything you’re unclear about, you can call me and ask.”

Giving such a task to someone who had only started working in the company a month ago, isn’t Executive Jiang being a bit too careless? Su Le took the file. She started think to herself. She was diligent in her work, but it shouldn’t have reached a point for Jiang Ting to trust her to handle such an important matter, right?

“You don’t need to worry. Even though JinChu’s CEO is crafty and good at scheming, he is still very courteous to his father’s friend. Also, you’re both from the same university, and as a Senior, I’m sure he will be somewhat courteous to a Junior schoolmate. Be at ease and go.” Jiang Ting waved her hand. Indicating to Su Le that she should leave.

Su Le silently left the office. So after talking for half a day, the task was given to her because of her relationship with Wei Chu as schoolmates. Sure enough, things like getting recognised by superiors in a short amount of time was just a myth.

JinChu’s headquarter was closeby to BaiSheng, and it only took Su Le a few minutes to reach JinChu’s office building. Glancing at the bright and dazzling company’s sign, Su Le felt rueful. They were both graduates from the same University but why were their differences so huge?

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Entering the building, Su Le went to the front desk and told them her identity. She was very swiftly shown the way to the elevators by a staff. Watching the floor number constantly rise. Su Le began to take in deep breaths to clam herself down. In any case, every person’s destiny is different and hers can be considered the worst.

When she left the elevator, a staff member did an inviting action with a small smile, “Miss Su, the third door down is the CEO’s office, please.”

“Thank you,” Su Le nodded towards the staff member. She looked at the bright and reflective floor before seeing a familiar figure as soon as she started walking a few steps forward.

“Miss Su Le?” Chen Xu’s face expressed shock as he thought back to the internal call he got saying someone from BaiSheng had come. So Su Le was the representative who BaiSheng had sent. Chen Xu calmed down, “Please enter.”

Chen Xu’s expression changed very fast and his attitude was friendly which made Su Le suspect that it wasn’t BaiSheng that was taking advantage of JinChu but the other way around. Exposing a small smile, Su Le greeted, “Assistant Chen.”

Chen Xu smiled and led Su Le in the direction to the CEO’s office. He spoke while they walked, “Regarding your company’s plan, the boss is putting much importance on it. If you’ve any opinions about it, you can discuss them with the boss. The Boss has always been an amicable person ….”

At this moment, a dejected department manager came out from the CEO’s office. His sluggish eyes was stupefied as he lifted his head and look at Chen Xu when he heard the word ‘amicable’. It was as if he had seen a Godzilla.

“Hmm, occasionally the boss would have a slight temper….”

The door to the CEO’s office opened again and this time, two more department managers who were pulling at their hair left the office.

Chen Xu’s smile slowly started to turn as stiff as a rock.

Su Le nodded, “Truly amicable. I don’t hear any yelling at all.”

All three department managers simultaneously stared at Su Le and their eyes expressed a ‘You’re too naive’ look. Sometimes, not being yelled at is much more scarier than getting yelled at.

Chen Xu looked away. He really couldn’t bear to carry on looking at the three department managers’ miserable conditions and went to knock on the door, “Boss, the representative from BaiSheng has come.”

Wei Chu who was looking through a report didn’t even lift his head when he spoke, “Take her to the VIP lounge, then get the Planning department manager to handle ….”

“Boss, I wanted to let Miss Su Le discuss about the details with you first but if you’re busy at the moment, how about I tell her to come back later?”

“This …” Wei Chu suddenly paused and then stood up and changed his speech, “Since the collaboration partner has come, why didn’t you take her to the VIP lounge to rest first instead of letting her stand in the corridor?”

Coming out of the office, Wei Chu saw Su Le, who was wearing a light coloured suit, as she stood behind Chen Xu with a smile. He wore a warm smile on his face, “Su Le, we’ll go to the VIP lounge first to discuss the course of the collaboration. The planning department manager is currently busy and might not have the time at the moment.”

Su Le nodded, “Then I’ll be troubling Senior.”

“There’s no trouble. Let’s go,” Wei Chu led Su Le a few steps forward before turning around and spoke to Chen Xu, “Bring two cups of green tea over.”

Chen Xu looked at Wei Chu’s attentive figure despicably and thought to himself whether he would still dare to act undignified in the future.

Thinking back to the planning department manager who recently left Wei Chu’s office, Chen Xu touched his chin and speculated that if he knew the boss had just mentioned that he was busy and was unable to meet the client, Chen Xu was not sure if the department manager would be laughing or crying?

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Originally, Wei Chu was not very happy about collaborating with BaiSheng because as a businessman, who would like to work in a collaboration that doesn’t bring in any benefits. But after seeing that person who had BaiSheng sent was Su Le, CEO Wei, who had always regarded benefits as the top most priority felt that this collaboration was actually extremely worthwhile.

After finalising the contract details, Wei Chu did not object to anything and signed the contract which caused Su Le to feel somewhat shocked. She had always thought that Wei Chu was a cunning person, to think that he would actually sign a contract that would bring him no advantage without any hesitation.

Had she …. overestimated Wei Chu?

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